Monday, May 25, 2015

Pray for Persecuted Church: Burma (officially known as Myanmar)

[The Voice of the Martyrs prayer calendar] Burma (officially known as Myanmar) has been ruled by a repressive military junta known as the State Peace and Development Council (SPDC) for 22 years. In 2010, Burma held a flawed parliamentary election that officially disbanded the SPDC but gave government positions to members of the former regime and heavily favoured the military. Authorities have perpetrated numerous human rights violations, including forced labour, genocides, rapes, tortures and detentions, mostly on Christian groups. About 2 million people have fled the country, and many within the country are internally displaced. Out of 142 people groups, 51 are unreached by the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

Restricted Nation
Buddhist 80.0%, Christian 9.0%
Buddhism/Military Dictatorship
Head of State
President Thein Sein

Though the Burmese government claims freedom of religion, in 2010 the SPDC banned independent Protestant house church activities and carried out a variety of abuses against ethnic minority Protestant Christians, including forced labour, relocations and destruction of religious sites. In the last two years, the military has closed churches, imprisoned pastors, forced Christian children to work and offered money and promotions to soldiers who convert Christians to Buddhism. Christian minority groups, particularly the Karen and Chin groups, are singled out because the government’s goal to create a uniform society of one language, one ethnicity and one religion. A 2007 document outlines a 17-point plan to eliminate Christians. A 2009 law bans independent house churches.

Pray: Pray for peace and for those displaced by armed conflict in the north.

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